The outgoing year was marked by several legislative anti-corruption initiatives in our country. At the same time, business crime/white collar crime practices became vivid for many legal advisors. While the significance of legal compliance in the West a must have standard, in Ukraine implementation of substantial norms has received some attention only recently.
In this light we have asked legal practitioners to provide us with an insight into this increasingly important issue.
We would agree that interest in the area of white collar crime practice has been reinforced recently both worldwide and in Ukraine. On the global scale it is due to the entering into force of the UK Bribery Act, which is much tougher than the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
In Ukraine, in addition to the latter, it is also due to the fact of adoption of Ukrainian anti-bribery legislation. With respect to compliance with the UK Bribery Act our clients are asking us to clarify whether the operations of their Ukrainian subsidiaries and representative offices are compliant with the UK Bribery Act and FCPA. Also after adoption of Ukrainian anti-bribery laws there has been an increase in the number of enquiries from our clients regarding whether their established business practices are in line with the new anti-bribery legislation.
The UK Bribery Act introduced, among other things, a new type of crime — Failing to Prevent Bribery. For example, the management of a company in the UK may be criminally liable for corrupted the conduct of its employees in Ukraine based on the fact that the company failed to take all reasonable action to prevent bribery by failing to implement a compliance program. This type of crime should be also introduced into Ukrainian anti-bribery legislation.
In addition to the types of legal work described above, any outside counsels may assist clients with implementing compliance programs within business structures of their clients, which requires drafting various internal rules and regulations, dealing with labor law issues.